I say nothing. It’s all too sad, too unbelievable. “Allie was so demanding,” Paul goes on. I nod understandingly. “Everything had to be perfection—from clothes to husband. And when I would object just a little, she would chide me for not loving her as I had loved Madeline.” It was hard for him to get the last word out. “So her mom is blaming me for her death, well, blaming Dad even more so.”
I listen in silence, light dawning on me gradually. I begin to see the big picture and it scares me. I’m going home to face a father I do not know—a scared, frightened, disillusioned father, who seems to be the victim of his own sanctity.

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